The Richard scores his 500th goal...Fifty-one years ago today, Rocket Richard scored his 500th career goal. It was in a game at the Forum in Montreal against the Chicago Black Hawks. Richard was low in the slot when Jean Béliveau sent a pass out. Richard one timed it into the back of the net.
I live in Toronto today, though became a Montreal fan growing up on the west coast. I asked my Mother in 1967 which team in the Stanley Cup finals was from Canada. She said Montreal. I have been a Montreal fan ever since. I have mixed loyalties today, the Vancouver Canucks as hard as I try, remain number two for me. Don't even ask where Toronto is on my list.
Living 350 miles into the interior of BC, I drove to every Montreal game I could in Vancouver. In those days the legendary Babe Pratt used to be at the front doors of the Pacific Coliseum greeting as many fans as he could.
He saw me looking at my ticket, trying to figure out where my seat was. He reached out for my ticket, "What a lucky young man you are son, your seat is where Guy Lafluer starts his rushes up the ice!" He said it with such excitement, I knew I had the best seat in the house. It was not bad, in the Canadiens end, at ice level in the corner. I know there are many better seats than that one, but on that night none were better.
The mystic, the magic, the passion, the firewagon hockey, the class of Montreal have kept me cheering since 1967.
Montreal's 100th year ought to be fun!